Eddie Johnson wins kicking duel; for now
Saskatchewan Roughriders Head Coach Greg Marshall got scooped by his own kicker. Marshall has been playing his cards close to the vest on how the kicking duties will be delegated during Sunday's home opener but he evidently didn't inform his kicker it was such vital information.
"Yeah, I'm doing all the kicking," Johnson stated quite matter of fact on Thursday and then was told his coach wasn't as forth coming when asked the same question.
"Oh, he didn't tell you guys yet, so I wasn't supposed to tell you guys. Well, then, I could possibly if there was a chance (do the kicking) so there's a 30 percent chance of Eddie kicking field goals on Sunday."
Johnson is the man
So the secret is out of the bag as Johnson has been told he's the guy for the Roughriders to begin the season.
Last year, after Luca Congi was injured Johnson handled all three kicking duties for one game because he wasn't comfortable going from punting to place kicking but things have changed this season after a summer working on it.
"I'm just working on the finer things of kicking field goals and getting the timing down with the snapper and holder and those things are coming around smoothly now. It's still something I haven't done for a long time so just each rep I get is just that much more experience I have."
Marshall has faith
Head Coach Greg Marshall has been a little timid letting loose any roster moves they may make before Sunday's season opener against the Edmonton Eskimos. Although the kicker blew his cover on the kicking game, Marshall says he believes Johnson or rookie Chris Milo can do the job.
"Like I said going into the final pre-season game I was happy with the way they were kicking the ball so that's why it was such a big disappointment that they struggled so badly (in the pre-season finale). You can't jump to conclusions after one bad night so we'll see how they do going forward."
Marshall said placing Chris Milo on the practice roster on Wednesday was a paper work move to get veteran Chris McKenzie back on the 46-man roster.
Holding a kicking key
Part of the confidence Johnson has with his kicking comes down to the faith he has in his holder, Weston Dressler, and long snapper, Alex Krausnick-Groh.
"I have a tendency to get going fast and I just need to be a little more patient to see the ball longer and the holders are doing a better job at getting the ball on the tee faster so I can see the ball longer ... so it's all coming together."